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Sobriety & Me: Sobriety in Adulthood

Welcome to the last chapter of Sobriety & Me where I share vulnerable experiences in adulthood that led to an eventual decision to be completely alcohol-free for life. To preface: writing about my past has not been an easy task, but I've found the process to be very cathartic and therapeutic as I venture down the road of discovering who I am in sobriety. My heart and my story are open for you to join me on my journey of recovery, self-discovery and exploration as a #sobergirl for life.

 

A couple of months after leaving my ex-fiancé whom I mentioned in Part 3, I met someone online who sounded like the perfect person. She was charismatic, hilarious, and ALLLLL about me. In our text conversations, she mentioned that she moved from Brooklyn, NY to Orlando the previous October during the same weekend that I broke up with my ex. This HAD to be fate, right?! During our initial text conversations, she couldn't stop talking about how sexy my lips were, and since I felt so deprived of sincere affection and attention, who was I to turn down those kind of compliments? From the very first date, her and I were inseparable. We dated for a solid two months, where the outings often included going to eat at nice restaurants (AKA: alcohol), going out to clubs (AKA: alcohol), accompanying her to New York where we leveled up the fun, enjoyed each other's company, and stayed in a gorgeous hotel looking out to the Empire State Building (AKA: more and more alcohol - among other things). She doted on me and dated me so well that I was completely blindsided when I discovered that she was married, lied about her age by more than a decade, never really moved to Orlando and was only here to care for her mom while she took FMLA from a company that she didn't actually work for (as in, she lied about her employment history, too). Those entire two months of my life were a devastating lie, and it did immense damage to my heart and my level of trust. I do not hold myself responsible for her dishonesty or her choice to betray me, but I firmly believe that consuming alcohol during that time made it easier for her to prey on me, especially in my weakness and vulnerability after my previous relationship.

Once all of the deception came to light and the beginning stages of grief began to set in, I was drinking often after work and going out to clubs every weekend with the intention of drowning out the pain. I spent money that I didn't have just to get a temporary fix from the extreme amount of torment that I was feeling. While I had other methods of healthy coping like therapy, journaling, exercising, and playing with my sweet kitty, I would often revert back to the unhealthy methods, like drinking and over-working myself. I eventually became a workaholic and a cutting-it-too-close-to-alcoholism drinker. I'm not entirely sure when I stopped drinking every weekend, or if it was even a conscious choice, but at one point the amount I was drinking subsided, and I dove into other exciting hobbies.


Several months later, I started dating my most recent ex beginning in December 2019. Our first date was at a trendy outdoor bar, and of course, drinks were involved. Our second date was to a gamer-friendly restaurant & bar where - you guessed it - alcohol was involved. By the time we were dating consistently, we had drinks at dinner several nights a week. We made plans surrounding our choice to drink (NYE, for example), and since this type of behavior had become my MO in previous relationships, this was familiar territory. My ex and I didn't make it official until February 2020, and the night that I accepted the offer to be her girlfriend, we drank ourselves into what was likely alcohol-poisoning. We were both sick for days after that night, and I made a conscious choice not to drink for a while. I didn't anticipate that night would be the last time I'd consume an alcoholic beverage, but that's how the story played out, and I'm thankful for my choice not to drink myself into a downward spiral at the end of yet another relationship.


Before writing this series, I hadn't connected the need to drink with ending my previous relationships as a coping technique, but I feel empowered by my own desire to unlearn toxic traits that I've subconsciously used to carry myself through painful situations. My greatest desire for my future self is to heal my wounds and trauma with a level of grace that allows me to fully feel my emotions without dulling the uncomfortable places within me that need dealing with. As I mark 14 months of sobriety, I can whole-heartedly say that each step has had significance in showing me what I'm worthy of, what I'm capable of unlearning, and just how far I've come in my journey of reconciling old wounds that were necessary to forgive. Sobriety has perpetuated me to forgive those who have wronged me, to remain dedicated to the power of vulnerability, and to see myself through a lens of unrelenting compassion and grace.


My relationships, my past decisions and mistakes, learning to value myself and unlearning negative coping skills taught from childhood have been a rollercoaster of a ride, but I'm proud of my messy journey of discovering who I am and who I was always meant to be. As I navigate beginning a new relationship (spoiler alert for those who didn't already know) without consuming alcohol, I'm committed to choosing myself and my well-being over my tendencies to drink alcohol as a way to navigate relationships and social settings. Remaining fully-present, clear-headed and sober throughout all of life's beautiful moments are of vital importance to me now, and I'm devoted to my own sense of self-love and loyalty. I am making a vow to myself and my future person to never take life for granted by wasting it on clouded moments, unhealed wounds and dependency on things that serve me no real purpose. I'm committed to being my best self for the benefit of my own life and life with her.


Who I am today is who I was always meant to be: a sober girl and a healed woman ready to take on the world!








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